Never make a promise you don’t intend to keep (even to yourself)

June 24, 2010 No Comments


Quote of the Day

To believe in something, and not to live it, is dishonest,” said Mahatma Gandhi.

365 Days to a Balanced Life – Day 24

As parents, we often find ourselves doing one thing but teaching another.  When my kids were younger I thought they probably wouldn’t notice but when they got older and started behaving like me, I realized I’d made a horrible mistake.

But how to correct it?

First thing is to accept that you are not a perfect parent and never will be.  Do you remember the moment you realized your parents were just two normal screwed up people?  I think my kids have already figured that out so the pressure is off.  No more pretending to be all knowing supermom.  That doesn’t mean I shouldn’t still keep trying to model good behavior.  In fact it is my kid’s comments that make me realize I still have some work to do on myself  as a person.

I think one of the areas in which I fail, is keeping my promises.  With the best of intentions I promise this and that but then life gets in the way and I have to break the promises one by one.  You think people (and your kids) won’t notice.  They do.  As with any habit,  it gets easier to break more promises as you go along.  Soon  you  notice that you start not  trusting  your own word anymore (how sad is that?).

I am not talking about “big” promises here,  just those little “I promise to take you shopping”  “I promise we’ll play a game after dinner”  “I promise I will walk everyday”  “I promise I will meditate” “I promise I will be more patient” “I promise we’ll spend the day doing things you like”

I consider myself an honest and  trustworthy person (sounds like it doesn’t it?).  Examining my life and habits for my 365 Days to a Balanced Life journey has made me realize the little ways I let myself down and ultimately sabotage my goals with broken promises.

“The most important element in any relationship, business or personal, is trust and credibility,” said Brian Tracy.  Broken promises eat away at that trust.

You build trust and credibility by keeping a promise.  Start by keeping those little promises to yourself and you’ll probably find keeping all your promises gets easier.  The rewards will be there in the increased self esteem and respect from others (especially your children).

After all didn’t our parents teach us – “A promise is a promise”?

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